16 June 2010

10 Things I Enjoyed About Today - Day 7

Today was an absolutely awesome day so this top 10 (continuation of my little experiment) will be an easy one:

1. Got to sleep in (always a bonus)
2. Had a nice lazy morning eating breakfast while watching episodes of Two and a Half Men
3. I had a presentation to attend which started at 11am... I thought it started at 11.30am... luckily when I logged onto my personal Uni computer at 10.56am my calender popped up with a message reminding me haha
4. Today was the day of my very important Honours presentation*
5. My Honours presentation went AWESOME!
6. Hung out with Sophie in her office afterwards (she is ridiculously cool)
7. Did I mention that my presentation went good =)
8. My presentation kicked 2 out of 3 of the other presenters easily (one of them by the end I literally had no clue what it was about haha)
9. With my presentation out of the way my next deadline isn't until July 12th (ages away!)
10. Felt really pleased and proud of myself on how well my presentation went

*Ha, just reading over today's list there seems to be a focal point of some sorts. As mentioned multiple times already today was time for my mid-year Honours presentation that counts for a considerable amount for my end of year mark (something I am extremely determined to get as high as possible). The presentation had to be 20 - 30 minutes long to an audience consisting of Honour student supervisors, fellow Honour students, PhD students and a few staff... usually I would be extremely nervous but surprisingly this time I was rather calm, something that definitely showed during my talk.

Ha, I guess it helps to know what I am talking about during a presentation for a change, makes rambling much easier. And yes, as any good student does, I put the slides together the night before =P

My slides flowed brilliantly, I spoke (although with a slightly shaky start) with great clarity and detail, something that was echoed by a few members of the audience afterwards. One reason why I am making such a big deal about this and why it is such a big deal to me isn't just because I went well and that should result in a good mark. It is all because of what one of the staff Rosie, our Student Administrator at my Uni, said to me.

She said "Aaron that was a fantastic presentation, for someone like me who doesn't really understand this technical stuff yours was the only one that was clear and concise and I actually enjoyed it." Now while that was nice of her to say that wasn't what made this such so monumental to me, it was what she said next. "I remember you gave a presentation a few years ago at IBL (a business lunch between the Uni and local companies), I had never seen anyone more nervous in my life" and then she cracked up laughing.

I cringed and laughed at the memory of that presentation... I had purposely tried to block it out (it was embarrassingly bad). But it made we realize something great. While it wasn't the praise I got after wards by some of the audience, or the sense within myself that I knew I had given a good talk, it was the fact that that was clear evidence of how much I have grown over the last few years. Today I performed much better then I would have only a year or two ago, I am accomplishing goals that I had set myself back when I was still in high school, I am sitting, talking and conversing with people of a status that I would have never of dreamed of only a year ago, or even a few months ago for that matter.

It was amazing to see and actually feel how far I have come.

During question time the Honours Head Coordinator asked me "Tell me, what do you find most rewarding about your Honours study".

I had to pause and think for quite some time, eventually I came up with this "When I graduated last year I felt that I was just another face in the crowd with so many other people in my same degree graduating as well. Doing Honours I feel like I am proving myself, standing above the rest, accomplishing something much greater then anything I had done before".

That sense of accomplishment and self improvement is what I am happy about the most.


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